British Columbia's registered psychologists travel to China in the continuing
effort to aid recovery from the Chengdu earthquake of 2008

True recovery from disaster takes more than just time.

VANCOUVER, Oct. 19 /CNW/ - At the invitation of the Chengdu Mental Health Center, The Fourth People's Hospital, Dr. Jeanne LeBlanc, Chair of the British Columbia Psychological Association's Disaster Response Network, will be returning to Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China today to provide a second series of trainings. She will be accompanied by Dr. Nicole Aube, who has extensive international experience regarding the long-term consequences of trauma. Drs. LeBlanc and Aube will be providing intensive workshops to mental health and medical professionals from the Sichuan Province. Topics include the psychological aspects of ongoing recovery from the 2008 earthquake, with an emphasis upon post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and resiliency. Dr. LeBlanc will present training in respect to meeting the psychological needs of many of the 300,000 + individuals physically injured as a result of this disaster, methods for supporting their families, and strategies to assist with maximizing reintegration into their communities.

Dr Jeanne LeBlanc is returning a second time, as a continuation of her efforts to aid in the recovery from the Sichuan Province Earthquake which occurred on May 12th 2008. Official figures (as of July 21, 2008) state that 500,227 are confirmed dead, including 68,636 in Sichuan province, and 374,176 injured, with 18,222 listed as missing. The earthquake left about 4.8 million people homeless, though the number could be as high as 11 million. Approximately 15 million people lived in the affected area. Dr Leblanc has noted: "The psychological footprint of the earthquake is many times larger than the damage to the structures. While towns can be rebuilt with relative ease, it takes much longer for the psychological impact to be fully realized and addressed in those impacted by this devastating event."

In accordance with British Columbia Psychological Association's belief that it is the fundamental right of all individuals to have access to mental health services, the BC Disaster Response Network of psychologists offers psychological intervention on a pro bono basis during and after destructive events. Our role includes brief psychological treatment with persons whose usual methods of coping have become ineffective in the face of such disasters or destructive events. Other services to be offered are facilitation of training for psychologists who wish to become members of BCPA's DRN, on site consultations, crisis intervention, education, follow up, and assistance with referrals to appropriate mental health services.

ABOUT British Columbia Psychological Association:

With over 650 members from across British Columbia, BCPA represents a valuable Healthcare resource. Since 1938, the BCPA has represented psychologists in British Columbia; it is a voluntary body and is committed to advancing the delivery and availability of Psychological Services along with promoting the psychological well being of all British Columbians.

SOURCE BRITISH COLUMBIA PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION

For further information: For further information: Rebecca Smith, Executive Director, No. 204-1909 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC, V6J 1Z3, Ph: (604) 730-0501, Fx: (604) 730-0502, Email: rs.bcpa@telus.net, www.psychologists.bc.ca

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BRITISH COLUMBIA PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION

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